The association between gender and tooth loss in a small rural population of South Africa
Africa, Charlene W.J.
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Periodontal disease, which attacks the gums and supporting structures of the tooth, is one of the major causes of tooth loss in adults. Few studies on general well-being have compared the differences in oral health between men and women with studies from Europe and USA reporting that there are more edentulous women than men.Among the many factors contributing to tooth loss are poverty, availability and accessibility to dental and other health care as well as cultural traditions. This study examined a population living in a high fluoride area near Cape Town. This isolated community has until recently been unexposed to the diets and habits of the western world and have inter-married for decades. The results of this study indicated that although women had better oral hygiene habits than men, tooth loss was associated with age rather than gender.